the plates had just been cleared and the table was finally empty. i put my hands on the table, and just as I had wanted, he placed his in mine. i smiled. he smiled. and i felt his leg brush mine. just then i glanced over and saw the little girl, a table over, watching us. she quickly smiled and looked away, embarrassed she was caught. but i kept watching her, out of the corner of my eye, and she kept watching us. giggling, smiling. observing. she was fascinated by us.
i remember being her so well. seeing couples when i was little. boys and girls together. holding hands. stealing kisses. touching. when i was a little girl i would watch couples in their twenties with great intrigue. they all seemed so old. so fabulous. so happy. i would always watch them and then imagine my future self. at night, replaying what i hoped for with my barbies and “ken.”
tonight, watching the little girl watch us, made me feel a little old, but also smile, i often think my life is nothing like my eight year old self imagined, especially how up-in-the-air it is with this trip, and the whole i-am-so-far-away-from-marriage-babies-pensions-houses-real-life thing, but tonight, at dinner, i realized i was exactly the woman my eight year old self imagined she would become - fabulous and happy.